Hacking Rhetoric

Lifehack: Napping (and why you’re doing it wrong)

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As it is with most college students, I am generally sleep deprived. It may be homework, tests, or night life (sometimes all three), but chances are something has me up until the odd hours of the night each evening. Sleep is such an important part of our lives that a substantial amount of sleep-related articles frequently appear on Lifehacker. One that I found very interesting is describing napping, and how you’re (probably) doing it wrong. Specifically, naps of varying lengths will aid different areas of cognitive function. A 10-20 minute nap is just enough of a jolt to make you alert, without the “sleep hangover” sometimes induced by the longer naps, but a 60 minute nap is ideal for improving memory. While a 60 minute nap may lead to a short “sleep hangover” due to your entering REM sleep and abruptly interrupting it, the boost to cognition and memory you get the rest of the day should be well worth it! In order to implement this hack, I’ve blocked out 60-minutes per day (during the optimal napping times — another Lifehacker article!) during which I plan to nap. There are some really great places on campus to nap, with the UT “Healthy Horns” map even providing a helpful map! Let’s see if I can reap the benefits of a little more sleep (even on those days I don’t get enough at night).

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